Effective Wrinkle Cream for Laugh Lines?

I'm 38 and getting married at the end of January. I was planning to get Botox for the two vertical lines between my brows, but am not sure what to do for the lines from my nose to mouth - and am concerned about side effects of fillers. Is there an effective topical treatment for fine laugh lines?

Doctor Answers 5

Sorry, No Effective Creams. Try a Filler!

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Sorry, NYCgal. There are no effective topical treatments for nasolabial folds (the lines that connect the sides of your nostrils to the corners of your mouth).

Don't believe the sales people at the cosmetic counters of the department stores! No cream with a seaweed extract, blueberry potion, or vitamin concoction is going to help!!

I would recommend that you see a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon about an injectable filler. Juvederm, Restylane, Elevess, Evolence, or Radiesse might each be a great option for you. These are all safe products. While each does have certain risks, in my hands, complications have been very few, and satisfaction rates have been very high.

Since you seem reluctant to try a filler, I would recommend starting with a product for which there is an antidote. Hyaluronic acid fillers (like Juvederm or Restylane) have great track records. I have never had an allergy or infection with these products. If you really hated the hyaluronic acid, then it could be dissolved away with hyaluronidase (also known as Vitrase).

Sorry to be so bullish about fillers. I know that you are really looking for an alternative. However, I really do think that these are great products.

Ventura Plastic Surgeon

Dermal Filers for Laugh Lines

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Dear NYCgal:

The laugh lines that you are referring to a called nasolabial folds and are best treated with dermal fillers.  I would recommend thorough assessment by an expert injector, with regards to assessing your cheeks and augmenting them if appropriate, thus softening the nasolabial fold.  Hope this information helps.

We're not aware of any creams for laugh lines

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We do not know of any creams that would be able to help with the laugh lines. The fundamental issue with this area is that loss of volume and downward movement of the facial structure cause these lines to appear. Creams cannot address either one of these issues. Dermal fillers help by replacing lost volume and surgery can help by modifying the facial structure.

The side effects from fillers include redness, swelling, irritation, bruising and in rare cases hard nodules. If you choose hyaluronic based dermal fillers such as Restylane, Juvederm and Perlane, the potential for side effects is lower.

Harold J. Kaplan, MD
Los Angeles Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.4 out of 5 stars 7 reviews

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You can try good skincare but fillers are the definitive treatment for laugh lines

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So far, there are no effective topical treatments for laugh lines. Having said that, though, you still have time to go on a really good skincare regimen (if you aren't doing so already). Using glycolic acids during the day and retin-a at night can stimulate collagen production and may improve the appearance of your laugh lines. I have also seen some very, very slight and very temporary softening of the laugh lines (nasolabial folds) from a cream called Freeze 24-7. You might have to squint to see it :) This is not an endorsement, just some anecdotal evidence.

The definitive treatment and the one that will give you the most bang for your buck is an injectable dermal filler. Since your wedding is in January, my recommendation is to have the lines filled in November and if necessary, you can go back for a touch up in December so that you'll look amazing by your wedding. I also suggest you opt for a hyaluronic acid filler such as Juvederm or Perlane so that if you hate the look, it can be revised or removed. (Other fillers such as Radiesse or Sculptra will not be correctable).

Jonathan Hoenig, MD
Beverly Hills Oculoplastic Surgeon

Creams are a waste of time for the nasolabial folds

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I agree that fillers are your best bet for those lines. This area is the safest place to get fillers in terms of high rate of success and low rate of complications. This is why almost every filler on the market do their patient studies for the FDA in the nasolabial folds. I use either Radiesse, Juvederm, or Sculptra for this area.

If you are not sure, go with Juvederm. Pick a doctor with a good reputation in your area who does his own injection. Many practices delegate this to an RN. In addition to General Plastic Surgeons, there are many fine Dermatologists, Facial Plastic Surgeons, Oculoplastic Surgeons who can help you.

Peter T. Truong, MD
Fresno Oculoplastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 42 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.